Despite major medical advances, heart disease remains the most common cause of death in the U.S. today. A majority of cases are the result of overweight or obesity! AGEs are among those factors that contribute to heart and vessel disease, whether due to diabetes, high blood “bad” cholesterol, or just older age.
AGEs oxidize lipid-carrying proteins, called lipoproteins, which causes them to stick inside the wall of our blood vessels, like rusty junk inside a metal pipe. This triggers “inflammation” as a protective response. But, if it is not stopped, over time the sticky junk grows. Eventually this may reach the point where it blocks the blood flow of a major artery or break into pieces that plug smaller vessels of the heart causing a heart attack. Pieces can also travel to the brain and cause a stroke. New epidemiological studies link high blood AGEs to worse mortality in the presence or the absence ofdiabetes.
Recent findings clearly spell out that AGEs (and not just fats and carbohydrates) in the amounts found in standard western diet are sufficient to start or speed up heart disease. This is because our diet, even in the recommended amount, is usually cooked in ways that produce excessive AGEs.
Therefore, we can no longer blame our “bad” genes. We no longer have the excuse that our condition is genetic and can do nothing about it. An old phrase about these diseases says that: “Genes may hold the gun, but the environment [here, the diet] pulls the trigger ”. Only this time, the trigger is food AGEs, and just avoiding this trigger – even if we have ”bad genes” – may be enough to avert a life-threatening disease.
The AGE-less Way has now been extensively studied in experimental animals. The program prevented heart and vessel disease. In healthy persons, a brief period of The AGE-less Way decreased levels of AGEs and improved inflammation and indicators of vascular function. A rather powerful message.